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Cold-Weather Cruises Rising in Popularity



Your first thought when it comes to taking a cruise is usually shutting your eyes and dreaming of sailing to exotic tropical ports, right?

Well, hold on.

There is a big sector of cruisers out there who have different thoughts.

According to Bloomberg News, the demand for cruises to cold-weather destinations is growing at a faster rate than tropical ones. Cruises to Alaska, Antarctica, Greenland, Norway and more are becoming significantly popular.

The lure?

Exclusivity, says Business Insider.

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The idea of cruising to places that are outside the norm and that few others have traveled to makes for a unique adventure, no matter the relatively high prices.

In fact, that’s another appealing part of the travel – the cost. The higher the price, the more exclusive it appears.

Tom Marchant, the owner and co-founder of luxury travel company Black Tomato, told Business Insider he expects demand to go to Antarctica will continue to overwhelm the supply – i.e., the cruises that travel there – meaning that the price of getting there will never drop.

“At the end of the day, it’s a very remote, hard to access, wild, and extreme environment,” Marchant said.

“Experience, that’s become the currency,” Seabourn president Rick Meadows told Bloomberg. “People want stories to tell their friends and family — to say ‘We went to Greenland and saw all these things’ to a room full of people who have not had that experience.”

Silversea Cruises, for example, has seen a more than 100% increase in trips to cold-weather destinations. Silversea is offering roughly 80 Arctic itineraries in 2020, ranging from $9,990 per person for nine days in Norway to $38,100 for 10 days in Antarctica.

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Cruise Ship Denied by Two Caribbean Ports Amid Coronavirus Outbreak



An MSC Cruises ship was turned away from at least two ports in the Caribbean on Tuesday after a crew member fell ill amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.

According to The New York Times, MSC Meraviglia was denied from docking in both Ocho Rios, Jamaica and Georgetown, Cayman Islands after port authorities learned that a crew member from the Philippines was ill. However, the Associated Press reported that the employee was believed to be sick with the common seasonal flu.

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Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in many different species of animals, including camels, cattle, cats, and bats.

“In an abundance of caution, in order to provide protection to the health and safety of the residents of the Cayman Islands, the government has denied permission for the cruise ship to call on Grand Cayman as previously scheduled,” Dwayne Seymour, health minister of the Cayman Islands, said in a statement.

The cruise line expressed frustration over the repeated denial, claiming that the ill crew member and all passengers on the ship had passed a health screening prior to embarking.

“The crew member had traveled to Miami from Manila, via direct connection in Istanbul,” MSC Cruises said in a statement to the Times. “He developed symptoms of common flu and tested positive to Type A influenza after he visited the ship’s 24/7 Medical Center while already on board. He has no other symptoms.”

The ship, which is carrying more than 4,500 passengers and 1,600 crew members, is in the midst of a 15-day roundtrip sailing from Miami that had included scheduled stops in Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, Mexico, Bahamas, Belize and Honduras.

MSC Meraviglia isn’t the first ship to be turned away from port amid fears of the spreading coronavirus and likely won’t be the last. Tuesday’s unexpected hiccup comes just one week after MSC Cruises updated MSC Bellissima’s Grand Voyage itinerary to Asia.

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